Figures from the Council of Mortgage Lenders show there were18,900 repossessions in the first half of this year compared with 13,400 in the second half of 2007 and 12,800 in the first half of 2007.
The rate of repossession now mirrors the rate of the late 1990s but is still half the rate of the early 1990s.
The total number of households with arrears of three months or more was 155,600 at the end of the first half, up from 129,600 at the end of 2007 and 120,800 at the end of the first half of last year.
The CML is maintaining its forecast for the full year of 45,000 repossessions and 170,000 mortgages in arrears of more than three months .
Intermediary Mortgage Lenders’ Association exec- utive director Peter Williams says: “A priority must be to revamp the Government’s income support for the mortgage interest scheme. This is dangerously out of date now in terms of its coverage of the market as the mortgage value limit for assistance is only £100,000 and kicks in only after 38 weeks.”
The CML has published a leaflet for MPs which is designed to help them to adv- ise constituents who contact them as a result of mortgage difficulties.